KC and the Blues

Last weekend, we made the short jaunt to Kansas City where we met up with my sister and brother-in-law.   They had made the short trek from the North Country.    KC is a great half-way-in-between meeting place for us and we really need to do this more often.   (I think the last time we met there for a fun weekend was to take the nephew to a circus when he was four.    He is now almost twelve!)

To repay my sister for the fantastic Bruce weekend, The Hubs and I invited her and her hubs to KC to see Blues Traveler at Grinders.    We  were introduced to BT’s music by my sister and her husband as they got one too many Blues Traveler CDs as a wedding present in the early 90’s and regifted one to us so it was apropos that we invited them to this concert.  You know The Hubs’ fondness for Grinders.   Anytime we are anywhere near KC, it is on his radar and we have to stop.   One of the last times we supped there, he noticed a poster advertiser the upcoming Blues Travelers concert.    He expressed his desire to go along with his amazement that BT would be playing at his favorite spot.

I have to admit that I had pretty low expectations about the event.    Behind Grinders there is an open air venue that from the outsider looking in looks pretty ramshackle.    I have never been a big fan of open-air concerts—-I guess I always envision crazy drunks sloshing lots of beer.

Rooftop seating almost like Wrigley.

My low expectations were greatly exceeded.

What a fabulous venue.    There is a camaraderie that was evident among the patrons and even though we had VIP tickets (which meant we got to park closer, had a private bathroom, and had front row access to the stage), I think this attitude was prevalent everywhere.     (Maybe this attitude was a bit too prevalent as apparently my brother-in-law got slipped a phone number by an apparent frequent-flyer at Grinders’ concerts.   That, my friends, is a story for another day.)

Great, great, great time.

We could sit at the side of the stage or stand at the front. For most of the concert we chose to stand at the front!

Views from side stage.

Not only did Blues Traveler put on a great show, we were introduced to two really great bands.   Shurman from Austin warmed up the crowd.   Then, local band, Trampled Under Foot, took the stage and we were all mesmerized.     This group of siblings is phenomenal.    The sister lead singer is a cross between Bonnie Raitt and Janis Joplin.     As you might know, I am a marketeer’s dream come true, so immediately after the concert, I ordered their latest album, Wrong Side of the Blues.     It is also phenomenal.     I encourage you to do the same.

That is the lead singer from Trampled Under Foot and what seemed to be the resident Grinders’ roadie dog.

Oh, yeah, and Blues Traveler was also playing.   🙂   (I also ordered their latest, Suzy Cracks the Whip, and Blues Traveler 25.)

John Popper

John Popper is amazing (although I thought he looked pretty pale and I am worried about his health again).     He tossed harmonicas out into the audience and my sister was hoping to catch one.   (The Hubs did catch a drum stick though!)     He joked about getting awakened earlier that morning to the marching tunes as the American Royal parade stormed through downtown.    He also joked about the early morning to come as BT was playing the “Brews and Blues” run the following day, starting at 7 a.m.

It was also a late night for these four “Forty-Somethings.”   We did hear some great music, spent some quality time together and we saw a few interesting characters, from the neon-lighted hula hoop girl to the overly extroverted patron.   (She plays into the brother-in-law’s proposition, but again, that is a story for another day.)    🙂

I will try to post some great eats from this KC weekend too.

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